Singapore Post: Transforming Mail Services in the Internet Age

Publication Type


Year Completed



This case is set in August 2012, about 10 months after the ‘Ready for the Future’ (RTF) Transformation Programme had been implemented at Singapore Post Limited (SingPost). The programme had been planned in response to the new challenges and opportunities that had arisen in the postal industry. In the last decade or so, most postal services around the world had witnessed a decline in demand for their basic mail services with the boom in Internet-based alternatives, such as e-mail and online bill-payment. Bucking the international trend, SingPost had managed to grow its total postal revenue from approximately US$244 million in 2001 to nearly US$325 million in 2011. Its careful preparation in anticipation of global trends, its search for alternative revenue sources, and an increase in Singapore’s population were some reasons why SingPost seemed able to outperform the industry worldwide. However, a closer examination of the components of the mail revenue would show that SingPost was not wholly immune to the global shift. Stamped mail, mostly from private individual customers, reduced from 180 million units in 2002 to 130 million units in 2011. Furthermore, rising global trends in market liberalisation had brought in new entrants into the once exclusive postal markets.

SingPost had recognised that adapting to these new economic conditions was critical to the survival of a modern postal service. The RTF Programme was a 30-month strategy to increase service volume by expanding into a regional network through acquisition and investment in more efficient infrastructure, IT, and talent. The strategy was based on acquisition and investment along five different ‘pillars’--mail, digital services, logistics, e-commerce and retail and financial services--to increase revenue and fill the void left by declining mail. Although the results over the past 10 months had been encouraging, would the roadmap laid out by the RTF programme enable SingPost to become a leader in e-commerce delivery solutions? Was it comprehensive and effective enough to grow the company?


Transformation, Market Liberalisation, Postal Service, Postal Market, Mail, Organisational Transformation, Crisis, Crisis in Transformation, Leadership, Diversification, Hybrid Companies, Capital Market Expectations, Monopolies


Business Administration, Management, and Operations | Marketing | Organizational Behavior and Theory | Strategic Management Policy | Technology and Innovation

Data Source

Field Research


Postal Service

Geographic Coverage


Temporal Coverage


Education Level

Executive Education; Postgraduate; Undergraduate


Singapore Management University

Case ID



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